Some of the Best of the Caribbean
The Caribbean is dotted with lovely islands that welcome cruise ships and offer terrific opportunities to swim and play along a beach, snorkel and dive, shop and eat – but, which are the best?
It’s hard to produce a "Best Places” list for the Caribbean because there are so many wonderful places to do what you want to do; and, because much depends on your personal taste. But, the following are among the best, and may be a starting point for your Caribbean cruise planning.
If you want to swim in clear, turquoise water, consider Aruba. Palm Beach is in the bustling "high rise” area of hotels and casinos, but the white sand and tranquil water is open to all. If you love jet-skiing, wake boarding and other water sports, try nearby Eagle Beach. Located in the "low rise” area, this beach is just as beautiful as Palm Beach and the waves make it more inviting for sports.
Many cruise vacationers choose the Caribbean because they want to snorkel or scuba dive, and the Cayman Islands offer some of the best of both. One thrilling place to dive is Lighthouse Point on Grand Cayman. Along a deep wall of reef, divers regularly see fabulous sea life, such as eagle rays, nurse sharks and turtles. Eden Rock and Devil’s Grotto, located right next to each other, are popular snorkeling spots frequented by colorful fish.
Unique shopping is available in the Dominican Republic, the eastern half of the island of Hispaniola. This is the only place in the world where a lovely blue stone called larimar is found, and one of the few places where amber is mined. Other locally made items include cigars, leather goods, embroidered fabric, rum and coffee.
Caribbean cuisine features coconut, lime and the favorite spices of a variety of indigenous peoples and colonists. Each island has its specialties. On Jamaica, these include meats and seafood seasoned with jerk spice, possibly developed by the Arawak Indians as a mixture of peppers, allspice and salt. Also, try some callaloo (a steamed leaf vegetable), rice and peas, curried goat, and "Stamp and Go” (tasty fish fritters).
There are lots more islands where you can search out the best of the Caribbean, including the Virgin Islands, Turks & Caicos and Cozumel, Mexico. To select your Caribbean itinerary, talk with your Cruise Holidays personal cruise expert.